Public Health funerals

LillyThe Council has a duty under the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 to bury or cremate deceased persons if no other suitable arrangements are being made.

  • This only applies where the death took place within the Woking Borough and not within a hospital. If the death occurs in a hospital, an application must be made to the hospital.
  • If a person dies without leaving a will and with no next of kin and there are no relatives or friends who are able or willing to take responsibility for the funeral arrangements, an application can be made to the Council to arrange and pay for a basic funeral. This would not include flowers or a following car.
  • It is important to contact the Council as soon as possible if a burial or cremation is required. On no account should any possessions, papers or money be removed before officers of Council have been informed and carried out an inventory of the estate.
  • Any money belonging to the deceased, such as savings in a bank or building society account, money from insurance policies or pensions including occupational pensions, will be used towards funeral expenses.

If there are relatives who are on a low income and in receipt of certain benefits, help with the cost of a funeral can be obtained by applying for a Funeral Payment from the Department of Work and Pensions.

Where there is no next of kin and in excess of 500 left in the estate after the funeral costs have been paid, the matter will be referred to the Government Legal Department as required.

All funerals arranged by Woking Borough Council since 2010 can be seen here.